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  #1  
Old Apr-23-2007, 1:22 PM
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Icon33 A HEAVENly night of HELLish metal...

Chip and Todd...Heaven & Hell!

To misquote Elton John, "Sab songs say so much..." LOL

Last night's show at the Dodge Theater in Phoenix kicked off the US tour for Machine Head, Megadeth and Heaven & Hell. What a great show, and what a great opportunity to showcase bands from three distinct eras of the genre.

Before we were even able to walk away from the car in the parking garage, we were approached by bootleggers hawking T-shirts for $20. Those prices had dropped to half of that by evening's end. Truth be told, they were pretty cool looking shirts, modeled almost exactly after one of the official shirts.

Opening the show precisely at 7:00pm was Machine Head, formed in the mid-90's. This industrial strength combo dished out a thirty-minute set that I would swear was only four songs. I could be wrong. We found our seats halfway through the first song, just in time for "Aesthetics of Hate", my personal fave track from their new CD 'The Blackening'. Robb Flynn and co. bulldozed their way through their short set, taking time to pay tribute to the late Dimebag Darrell, and thank everyone for coming out to support the tour.

Just fifteen short minutes later, Megadeth hit the stage. Founder and mouthpiece of the band Dave Mustaine didn't take too much time chatting between songs, instead letting the music speak for itself. The band played some great new material, as well as dug a little deeper for classics like "Wake Up Dead", "Hangar 18", "Peace Sells" and "Holy War". Mustaine is not only a formidable lead guitarist, but one of the tightest rhythm guitarists around, blasting out intricate riffs that would probably stump his former Metallica band mates. The crowd gave Megadeth rapturous applause, particularly when they reappeared onstage for a well-deserved encore. When the roar finally subsided, Dave said "I wish you could be up here where I am, and see how beautiful you people look...." Also worth noting - Dave was playing his new Dean signature model guitars all night. They looked and sounded great.

Black Sabb- -um- Heaven & Hell came on right around 9:00pm, to the classic intro of "E5150", from the 'Mob Rules' album. The stage set was some sort of castle/cathedral courtyard, with nice lighting and video fx. But instead of wowing everyone with something like "Neon Knights" right off the bat, they opened with a plodding new number. Not that it wasn't a good song, but it was kind of an anti-climactic opening to the show. The rest of the set was a trip back to a golden era in the band's history, the band working their way through (by the way, these are not in any order...) "Falling Off the Edge of the World", "Sign of the Southern Cross", "Children of the Sea", "Lady Evil", "Die Young", "Heaven & Hell", my personal fave "Voodoo" and a few others which escape me right now. I believe they played all three of the new tracks from the 'Black Sabbath: The Dio Years' anthology were played. I know at least two of them were played, but since I'm not familiar with the 'Dehumanizer' material...nuff said. Ronnie James Dio looks pretty much the same as he has, except for thinner hair. But the man's voice is seemingly ageless. (He himself has got to be in his mid-sixties. Heck, I have photos and recordings of him that date from 1958!) Tony Iommi was all class, dressed in black overcoat and pants, pulling classic - and uber heavy - riffs out of his Gibson SG's all night. Go back and have a listen to Sabbath's first album - give "Black Sabbath" a spin and tell me Iommi did not single-handedly create heavy metal. Geezer Butler plucked away on his bass, fingers dancing all over and head bobbing in time to the music. Nice to see drummer Vinny Appice, as well. I love his drum style, and his solo was fine - actually somewhat pedestrian; I would have preferred another song in its place. If keyboardist Geoff Nicholls was there, he was tucked away backstage somewhere. LOL

All in all, a great night - AND thankfully, the whole crowd was on its feet the WHOLE time! I hate going to a show where people sit for this song, stand for that one, sit for the next one, etc.

Whoever gets a chance to see one of the dates for this tour is in for a great night. I'm anxious to hear what you think. Thanks for letting me ramble.

Cheers...Todd
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  #2  
Old Apr-23-2007, 1:35 PM
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Thanks Todd. Will be looking forward to the gig on Saturday night here. Am really fired up for Megadeath, and your review has stoked the fire moreso
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Old Apr-23-2007, 3:28 PM
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Great review, Todd!
Any pics of the stage set?
And... is Marty Friedman still in Megadeth or does Mustaine handle all the guitar parts by himself now?
Cheers,
Christian

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Old Apr-23-2007, 5:30 PM
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As Todd and I were in line to enter the venue, security was yelling out that if you had a camera....take it back to your car.

As it turned out, it would have been the easiest thing in the world to get a small camera in the venue last night. The proof in that is, everybody in the crowd had one !!!

Here are a couple of links I've found in the couple minutes of looking, that gives you an idea of the stage set up. They're not the best.

I believe this one is from last night's show in Phoenix.
http://entertainment.webshots.com/photo/2769378360056641291NgRkEQ

This one has several galleries of photos. These must be from the Canadian tour.
http://www.black-sabbath.com/gallery_2/v/concertpics/2007tour/

Chip
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Old Apr-23-2007, 6:13 PM
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I'm looking forward to seeing them later in the year at Wembley. I wonder who'll be supporting them there? Megadeth would be kool indeed...
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  #6  
Old Apr-23-2007, 6:50 PM
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Christian, Megadeth is still a four-piece, but Marty Friedman hasn't been in the band for a number of years now. Al Pitrelli took his place for a while, and the newest guitarist is Glen Drover, whose brother Shawn plays drums in the band. Mustaine could easily play all of the guitars for the band, but having two fills out the sound. Bassist is James Lomenzo, formerly of White Lion, Black Label Society and Rondinelli.

Glen Drover is quite good, by the way. I really enjoyed his playing!

Cheers...Todd
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Old Apr-24-2007, 2:00 AM
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Wow - thanks for the review guys - I can't wait to see them now!

I don't like seated gigs either (unless it's Steve Vai or similar - then perhaps you need it a bit more comfy!! )- luckily we've got standing tickets for November - Yippee!!

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Old Apr-24-2007, 12:03 PM
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Thanks for the review. Sounds good. Am going to see them in Birmingham in November.
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Old Apr-24-2007, 12:18 PM
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Thanks for the review. I'm going to the May 12 show in Detroit.
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Old Apr-25-2007, 2:43 AM
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Thanks indeed for the review! I just can't wait to see this magical line up again!

Is there a tourbook available??

Im actually surpirsed they play these big arena's. Didn't Sabbath play smaller venues during their first reunion in 92? I guess it was the Grunge period which made them play on a smaller scale.... I'm glad they're doing way better now.

Although I can't judge it from here, but there isn't very much attention in the US mainstream press on this reunion is there?

Heaven and Hell should be on the cover of Rolling Stone if you ask me
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Old Apr-25-2007, 6:23 AM
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Many thanks guys for your review

We are going to see them in July at the Montreux Jazz (lol) Festival, and in November (Birmingham + Notthingham).

In Montreux, the "special guest" will be Motorhead

In the UK, it seems that there will be 2 supporting acts : Iced Earth and Lamb of God.

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Old Apr-25-2007, 2:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Arjen View Post
Is there a tourbook available??..........

Although I can't judge it from here, but there isn't very much attention in the US mainstream press on this reunion is there?
..............

Arjen,

No there wasn't a tour book available.

I agree, I haven't seen much in the way of press about this tour.
I guess they think if it doesn't involve Ozzy, it's not relevant to anyone. Which is of course utter b.s.

Although, I was just told today by someone at work, that in this past Saturday's paper, they saw Glenn mentioned in an article on H&H. The article included a (incomplete) list of different singers Sabbath has had over the years. Since I missed it, I had to go digging through my recycle bin to find it

If you're interested, here's the link for the article.............

http://www.azcentral.com/ent/music/articles/0420sabbath0422.html

Chip
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  #13  
Old Apr-25-2007, 11:44 PM
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Wow!!! What a great night!!!!! Just walked in the door from the show at the Fabulous Forum. The sound was great, the light show was great, the backdrops were really interesting and fit the songs, cool stage set, Tony, Vinnie and Geezer played fantastic, I did not hear one mistake, and of course the star, Ronnie James Dio was in fine voice. Yes Todd, Ronnie is allegedly 64, but could be as old as 66-67, I've seen reports of him being in his senior year in high school in early 1958! Missing in action were Turn up the night, TV Crimes and Time Machine, Rats!!! The only downer was seeing some dumbass hit a guy in front of me when I was walking in the hall right after I got to the show, I later asked the victim, he didn't know the guy and he sure as heck didn't do anything to deserve that from my viewpoint. I was pretty scared after that, there were sure some characters there that were looking for a fight, (there was another brief one on the floor near me) I think I will go back to going to shows like GH, Jeff Beck and Toto where there is no worries about metal losers, I'm glad I only got there just before Sabbath. Sabbath were totally amazing though and onstage almost two hours, the show was a real bargain for the money. (And I was home 30 minutes after the show ended!!!) I love that 105 Freeway


John
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Old Apr-26-2007, 5:14 PM
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Thanks for the comments John. Glad you had a good time.

Yeah, there are some real losers in the world. After the show here in Phoenix, as we were walking along the side of the parking garage, some a-holes were dropping beer bottles off the top of the parking garage onto the sidewalk.

During the show, someone threw a drink on RJD. He stopped what he was doing and had a few choice words for them.

Chip
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  #15  
Old Apr-26-2007, 6:22 PM
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As for who that mystery keyboard player was, it was Scott Warren, from Dio's solo band. He looked to be really enjoying himself, because I was on Iommi's side of the stage, I could actually see behind the mains on Geezer's side, where Warren was ensconsed and visible to me with his Kurzweil keyboard. I think it's a shame they have put the guy out of sight, he was fun to watch and he looks like Tony Kaye from Yes. Geoff Nichols is busy doing soundtracks these days.

John
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Old Apr-28-2007, 2:36 AM
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A couple of notes from the show I forgot to mention. This was my first Sabbath show and the Dio era was really my era and I'm more into the later stuff including Gillan, Hughes and Martin than the Ozzy years, although after Wed, I would love to see them with Ozzy. I never realized how much Iommi smiled at the crowd after looking at all those serious pictures for decades. Geezer, NEVER looks at the crowd. Ronnie was filled with smiles and appreciation for the band and audience and the vibe onstage was very very good. A fellow musician said he hadn't seen Ronnie so fired up in his recent solo gigs like he was at the Forum, a sold out arena will do that for you eh? Vinnie had a really cool tom set up to his left, it would rock back and forth and he would grab it and slam his stick into it, and the tom would appear to almost tip over as it rocked back and forth. I've never seen anything like that. That was totally cool!!!! The show got a good review in today's LA Times, it's rare to see metal mentioned in our paper.

John

Quote:
LA Times, Friday

POP MUSIC REVIEW
Heaven and Hell at the Forum

The members of Black Sabbath, circa 1982, take their fans to the other side in a head-banging festival of heavy metal.

By Greg Burk, Special to The Times
April 27, 2007

In heavy metal, you must hit the right combination of ham and fist. Wednesday night at the Forum, Heaven and Hell, Megadeth and Machine Head gave an advanced seminar in the delicate art of arena rock.

Guitar riffmaster Tony Iommi and bass wrangler Geezer Butler virtually invented arena rock nearly 40 years ago as half of Black Sabbath. And they continue to deliver the quintessence of clobber with Heaven and Hell — which, completed by Ronnie James Dio's operatic tenor and Vinny Appice's fearful drum slog, duplicates the highly regarded 1982 version of Sabbath. (Iommi could call it that but defers to his original Sab incarnation fronted by Ozzy Osbourne.)

The wide-ranging audience had been waiting all night to slake its Hellish thirst when the glitter-shirted elf Dio appeared, chanting the provocative questions "What do you say to the dead? Will you forgive me for living?" Iommi's shuddering riff, like a shoulder thrust against a rusty sepulcher door, set the tone for what functions best in an echoing concrete vault: deliberate battery.

Though Heaven and Hell revved regularly with chargers such as "The Mob Rules" and "Die Young," the selections from the three Dio-Sab studio albums (from 1980, 1981 and 1992) were dominated by slow and dire paeans such as the environmentally themed "Children of the Sea" and the mystical "The Sign of the Southern Cross." The new moans "Shadow of the Wind" and "The Devil Cried," from the just-released "Black Sabbath: The Dio Years," blended seamlessly with the murky templates stamped on 1992's "Dehumanizer" album.

By the time the four crashed to the conclusion of the dynamic "Falling Off the Edge of the World," the crowd was like a mass of asylum inmates clamoring for the coup de grace. It arrived with the dizzying extended build of the signature song "Heaven and Hell," Iommi flaying demonic inspirations while Dio joined his virtuosic howls with those of the rabble. And these guys are over 60.

Dave Mustaine's current edition of Megadeth preceded Heaven and Hell with a hard-bitten set reaped from its '80s thrash period ("Peace Sells … But Who's Buying") all the way through recent years' more melodic but no less intense proclamations ("Kick the Chair"). Fueled by corporate conspiracy and alien cover-ups, Mustaine's paranoia is his muse. Even if the golden-tressed guitarist has joined the anti-U.N. squad for his upcoming album, "United Abominations," his ripping new song "Washington's Next" indicates his suspicion serves him. This night's arc peaked with the spooked spiels of "Hangar 18"; Mustaine is letting slick new axman Glen Drover handle a bigger share of the solos lately. Overall, despite drummer Shawn Drover's solid thwack, Megadeth's condensed and speedy sound didn't sync well with the big hall's booming acoustics.

By contrast, opener Machine Head showed real arena adaptability. These thrash vets, riding a pretty spectacular new studio album, "The Blackening," pulled off the unusual feat of sounding like a totally different (and just as good) band live. The double-kick drums and pinging guitars united into a head-trippy environment that nevertheless rocked viciously. Despite front man Robb Flynn's strenuous exhortations, though, the sparse early-evening audience (the building filled later) stood largely indifferent, anticipating Heaven's arrival.

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Old Apr-30-2007, 8:51 AM
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Saturday in Albuquerque

Well, I have recovered my hearing from Saturday night's show in Albuquerque, finally, so I will write a short review of the show. We got there early since my wife is always afraid we will be late. The Journal Pavillion has ONE road in/out, and it is a three mile long winding road. So the Pavilion itself is truly in the middle of nowhere, and therefore has no noise constraints. Pretty cool, and they had Disney-esque parking arrangements, so travel was quite good.

When you walk into the gates you are first patted down, for what I do not know, since everyone there was hammered. Plus there was ONE place to eat and 44 places to buy beer and booze. There were a few people with their kids eating, and the lines were immense for Jagermeister shots and Tequilla. Which leads to the dumbest person ever, who got tossed from the event BEFORE the first band had even finished their first song !! As you all say, every crowd has its nit-wit, but this guy took the cake. He got about 60 seconds of live music before he had knocked over a row of seats, three people and gave the Security Chief the finger, which was not a very good idea. Bye-Bye.

Now Machine Head came out to do their set....this was quite possibly the single WORST act I have EVER seen live, and that includes off-key karaoke singers Four guys with about 600 tattoos and four bottles of Clairol hair coloring shouting F**k this and that into a microphone with the vocal dexterity of a wretching wildebeast that had pretty guitars they had no ability to play Absolute crap and 30 minutes of my life I will never get back

Next, Megadeth played a seering set of awesome metal. As Todd and Chip and John have pointed out, Dave Mustain can REALLY play I was impressed with the band from beginning to end, and I think the crowd would have liked even more from Mustain and clan. He had a fine rhythm guitarist with him and a bass/drum rhythm section that gave Dave the freedom to do whatever he wanted with his Flying Vee. What he did was outstanding, and even his vocals, which were audible and decipherable were solid. I am not one who knows too many song names, but whatever the titles of the tunes, they were played with aplomb. A four star show from Megadeth

Then came H & H. The stage scenery reminded me of a High School theater production, but it could have been worse Finally, out came Dio , Iommi, Butler and Appice...and they were as tight as can be. Iommi still has a sound no one can match. He is so unique even 35 years later. Plus, he looked as if he was absolutely thrilled to be on stage Geezer was doing his thing off to the side, yet playing like he was 25 again. In all the years of Sabbath, he never got the credit for being a really powerful musician Appice is a pedestrian drummer, but more than adequate for the band When Dio came out, the crowd went nutty...and RJD looked truly excited to be there also. Of course, me the eternal critic could not take him seriously. He had on a velvet sleep shirt for crying out loud So I had to look at a balding munchkin in his bed clothes. Granted, the guy can sing like hell, but he looked like he just stayed in his Holiday Inn Express.

Highlights though were many, but Mob Rules has always been a fave of mine, and Sign of the Southern Cross was brilliant. The close of Heaven and Hell, which was extended by a really awesome piece of playing by Iommi was riveting. The encore of Neon Nights was rockin'. Overall they were a good listen, but at my age and attitude, this will probably be my last "Metal" show in a large venue...I think the people around me now make my night more of a chore than being there for the show...

Now I can look forward to GLENN HUGHES in NYC, which is what every other show is a warmer for !!!
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Old Apr-30-2007, 3:09 PM
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A little harsh there, Frank - the worst band you've ever seen live? I've seen some real stinkers in the past, but I liked Machine Head. Being the opening band, they obviously had the worst mixed sound of the three. And with time being of the essence, Robb Flynn should have simply let the music do the talking instead of dropping a bunch of F-bombs in his stage raps. He didn't come across as the veteran frontman he is - he's been recording and touring since his 1988 debut with the band Vio-lence.

I think a good deal of the band's appeal lies in whether or not you are a fan of that particularly caustic brand of metal, or the 80's bands like Exodus, Possessed, Overkill and Sepultura who inspired it.

Cheers...Todd
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Old Apr-30-2007, 4:33 PM
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Stinkers???

Hey Todd,

C'mon..give it up!! Who were some of the alleged stinkers you have seen / heard? Speaking for myself, I can't say that I have seen a real dog act....but I have seen a few badly placed opening acts....Grandmaster Flash and The Furious Five opening for The Clash at Bond's Casino in 1981; the hot, tightly packed and mostly white crowd didn't want to know and loudly booed the hapless rappers who left the stage after about 10 minutes. But the prize goes to the hapless opening act for the Dregs at My Fathers Place back in the summer of 1981. The venue was a former bowling alley with rows of picnic tables....You can imagine the makeup of the crowd;progsters and Southern rockers liquored up and ready to party down with the Dregs! At one point, the guitarist stepped to the mike and said something like; "We need a little positive energy for the audience.." His plea was met with a lusty round of boos, and bellowed requests to get off the F*&#%ing stage! I imagine as he stood in the spotlight, he was wondering why he hadn't run away from home at fourteen and joined the circus....

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Old Apr-30-2007, 7:43 PM
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Originally Posted by toadsterama View Post
A little harsh there, Frank - the worst band you've ever seen live? I've seen some real stinkers in the past, but I liked Machine Head.

I think a good deal of the band's appeal lies in whether or not you are a fan of that particularly caustic brand of metal, or the 80's bands like Exodus, Possessed, Overkill and Sepultura who inspired it.

Cheers...Todd

Todd,
They actually out-badded a band calle Meatjack from Baltimore who I saw open for Nik Turner's Hawkwind in '94. They were so awful, even Nik, who is one of the nicest people I know, mentioned that they would no longer be opening for him on the remainder of the tour...they were only noise, and not good noise. This band out did themselves (Machine Head) between the horrendous music, crap vocals and I am really over hearing F-bombs being blurted out as if they were ordering a Big Mac. This may be the first time we have not agreed on a band...oh well... And, just for clarity, Overkill, Et al are not my cup of tea at all...
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Old Apr-30-2007, 8:56 PM
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Frank, there is no doubt in my mind that for every band we do agree on, I have something in my collection we would not agree on. LOL Variety is the spice of life, as they say. Sandwiched between classic albums by AC/DC, Sabbath, Glenn Hughes, Rory Gallagher, Sam Cooke, BOC, Gamma and Alan Parsons you'll find albums by Venom, King Diamond, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Willie Nelson and Sade.

I also happen to know a certain someone who's a fan of Missy Elliott... And it's not me

Cheers...Todd
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Old May-01-2007, 7:38 AM
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Todd, I have to agree with you 100%...as for the Missy Elliot fan, would that happen to be someone from the Southwest? I haven't room to talk with my collection of Motorhead placed next to "Classical Loon" along the way.
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Old May-01-2007, 2:15 PM
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I don't want to name names, but here's a hint: it gets Crazy Hot In Phoenix!

Cheers...Todd
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Old May-01-2007, 3:08 PM
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Hey!! ...I hear I'm being talked about on this forum.

Jeez, can't a guy have a single of Missy's, not a full CD, but a single mind you, and not be labeled a fan

"Work it....flip it over and re-verse it "

Hey Frank, next week when we go to the ballgame, I'm gonna wear my Missy t-shirt. Is that okay?

Chip
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Old May-01-2007, 3:22 PM
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Hey man, you outed yourself - I didn't say a word


Frank, I have a Machine Head shirt you can borrow, if you'd like to counteract his Missy Elliott ensemble.

Cheers..Todd
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Old May-01-2007, 8:45 PM
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Thanks for the offer Todd, but I believe I will go with either the Barry Manilow or Tom Jones
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Old May-02-2007, 3:27 PM
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Here in Vegas, either one is readily available...

Todd
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Old May-02-2007, 4:14 PM
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Grace Grace is offline
 
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Pathetic.....



Yes, the strain of the excitement, for the up-coming Glenn Hughes
Los Angeles performance is starting to take its toll on the fans.

Example: Use of the word "ensemble" in a GHPG post,
and arguing about making the correct t-shirt fashion statements.

Perhaps if these 3 gentlmen end up at the same rest home,
Glenn might perform a charity concert there, for them.
With doctor's approval, of course.

C'mon guys; stay tough.
You can do it......only one more month to go!


Grace
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Old May-02-2007, 9:45 PM
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Icon33

Perhaps for some of us, it's the strain of wondering if we'll make it to the show at all...

After almost 15 years here in Las Vegas, Angie and I are moving back to Boise. I have received a job transfer that I put in for late last year, and it just so happens that this move comes two weeks before the L.A. show, and throws a huge wrench into my plans. I won't know if it's a go until the week of the show. Good grief, I'm so frazzled I'm speaking in rhyme now...

I don't need to tell you how depressing it would be to miss this show.

Todd
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Old May-03-2007, 9:08 AM
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Grace Grace is offline
 
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Icon49 "Total shock" is not our friend......



You're moving in 2 weeks?
You've already found someplace to live in Boise,
or staying with relatives/friends until you find someplace?
How long since you knew this transfer was coming through,
conflicting with the GH performance?

OK. None of the above questions are any of my business,
so please forgive my numerous questions to my state of shock.

PS......If you "officially" leave Las Vegas in 2 weeks,
could you take an immediate two week vacation,
using that time for a liesurely, scenic (by way of LA)
route heading up north?

"Finagling" as fast as I can think them up......................

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